Trabecular bone microarchitecture is related to the number of risk factors and etiology in osteoporotic men

Erick Legrand, Maurice Audran, Pascal Guggenbuhl, Régis Levasseur, Gérard Chalès, Michel-Félix Baslé, Daniel Chappard
Microscopy Research and Technique 2007, 70 (11): 952-9
Microarchitecture of trabecular bone is a very important component of bone quality in osteoporosis and a determinant of vertebral fracture in men with low bone mineral density (BMD). In contrast to women, male osteoporosis is, in most cases, secondary. The relationships between microarchitecture and different risk factors have never been evaluated in men. About 152 men with low BMD at the lumbar spine or hip (BMD, T-score < -2.5) were included in this study. Risk factors were: age, BMI, alcohol intake, corticosteroid therapy, hypogonadism, and chronic diseases. Transiliac bone biopsies were obtained and histomorphometry was done on an image analyzer; the following parameters were measured: cortical thickness (Ct.Th), trabecular bone volume (BV/TV), trabecular thickness (Tb.Th), separation (Tb.Sp) and number (Tb.N), interconnectivity Index (ICI), star volume of the bone marrow, and strut analysis with node and free-end count. The 50 men with two risk factors had a lower BMD, lower Ct.Th and a significant higher star volume than those with one factor or idiopathic osteoporosis. The 26 men with at least three risk factors, had a lower BMD, a reduction of BV/TV and Ct.Th and a marked disorganization of the trabecular network (increased Tb.Sp, ICI, star volume, and free-end to free-end struts). The prevalence of vertebral fractures was higher in these patients. When the main risk factor was considered, a marked decrease in trabecular bone connectivity was observed in hypogonadic men. In osteoporotic men, higher the number of risk factors, lower the connectivity of trabecular network and higher the vertebral fracture risk.

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